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2014 ONU Volleyball Preview

This is the time that many athletes prepare themselves for dominating their sports and bringing some sweet glory to Polar Bear nation. For this piece, let’s take a look at volleyball. Yes, indeed volleyball, a game that showcases how geometry and physics can be utilized in a sport which can dissolve from a well-organized operation, into a display of hysterical chaos. From elementary school gym classes to the OAC, volleyball resonates throughout all ages a feeling of competitiveness, fast paced action and the thrill of smacking a ball like it owed you money.

I sat down with the ONU volleyball head coach, Kate Witte, to ask her about how she and her team are preparing for this upcoming season and what they are hoping to accomplish. Coach Witte told me that they are excited to begin the season with they’re first game against Coe College. After coming from off a very successful season last year, Coach Witte told me that the team didn’t feel any pressure for this season. Even without any pressure from the previous season, this season is going to be a tough one for the team with three upcoming games against nationally ranked teams, making the need for good teamwork and players to be able to function with one another all the more vital. To prepare for such a challenging season, the team uses scouting reports from the opposing team and then applies any advantage that they can find in order to better their chances.

Another way that the team is building themselves up for this season is to focus on the team itself, by which I mean working on the interaction between each player in order for them to work as a single unit to dominate the court. Coach Witte told me that she really liked the personalities of the team as well as the chemistry between the players, saying that without it the season would be even more challenging. With this new season comes a change in the roster, with the team being composed of 6 freshmen, 4 sophomores, 5 juniors and just 1 senior. The incoming younger players onto the team has also had a positive impact on their outlook, having a strong core made up of sophomores and juniors who will be the players to keep the team going with freshmen building up the back court. With this influx of dedicated, energetic players like Hanna Davis and Ashley Borchers, along with upperclassmen like Ellie Gillespie and Kaitlann Hogrefe leading the team. With a roster like that Coach Witte foresees the team doing a solid job in the regional as well as having a bona fide chance of success in the OAC, putting them on a high note for next year. With their next game with Bluffton coming up quickly, the ladies have a lot of work cut out for themselves.

Whether or not the ONU volleyball team will dominate in the OAC is still anyone’s guess but from what I have heard from Coach Witte, I have no doubt in my mind that they have the will, the determination and the skill to be able to out spike any of the heavy hitters on the schedule. Here’s to hoping that they can give the ball a serious case of floor burn and net anxiety.